2. PROPONENTS’ DEFENSE OF PROPOSITION 8
3.WHETHER ANY EVIDENCE SUPPORTS CALIFORNIA’S REFUSAL TO RECOGNIZE MARRIAGE BETWEEN TWO PEOPLE BECAUSE OF THEIR SEX
4. WHETHER ANY EVIDENCE SHOWS CALIFORNIA HAS AN INTEREST IN DIFFERENTIATING BETWEEN SAME-SEX AND OPPOSITE-SEX UNIONS
5. WHETHER THE EVIDENCE SHOWS THAT PROPOSITION 8 ENACTED A PRIVATE MORAL VIEW WITHOUT ADVANCING A LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT INTEREST
6. CONCLUSIONS OF LAW: DUE PROCESS
7. CONCLUSIONS OF LAW: EQUAL PROTECTION
8. CONCLUSIONS AND REMEDIES
There isn't anything new for us in Judge Walker's Conclusion and Remedies sections, but I found it gratifying to read. My own thoughts on Proposition 8 are below.
CONCLUSIONTo pass Prop 8, its proponents spent millions fueling homophobia in California. They alluded to threats against many groups. Businessmen were threatened by gay marriage because with its legalization they would not be able to discriminate against gay clients. What they didn't tell you is that regardless of Prop 8, discrimination against gays is as illegal as a business discriminating against any other minority. Churches were threatened, because if Prop 8 wasn't passed then they would be forced to hold services for gay weddings. This was a straight up lie, no church or clergy are required to recognize or officiate any marriage, religion is not a prerequisite for the civil institution of marriage.
Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license. Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite-sex couples are superior to same-sex couples. Because California has no interest in discriminating against gay men and lesbians, and because Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis, the court concludes that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.
Plaintiffs have demonstrated by overwhelming evidence that Proposition 8 violates their due process and equal protection rights and that they will continue to suffer these constitutional violations until state officials cease enforcement of Proposition 8. California is able to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, as it has already issued 18,000 marriage licenses to same-sex couples and has not suffered any demonstrated harm as a result, see FF 64-66; moreover, California officials have chosen not to defend Proposition 8 in these proceedings. Because Proposition 8 is unconstitutional under both the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses, the court orders entry of judgment permanently enjoining its enforcement; prohibiting the official defendants from applying or enforcing Proposition 8 and directing the official defendants that all persons under their control or supervision shall not apply or enforce Proposition 8. The clerk is DIRECTED to enter judgment without bond in favor of plaintiffs and plaintiff-intervenors and against defendants and defendant-intervenors pursuant to FRCP 58.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
The worst was the vague threats that gay marriage supposedly made against children. The implications were that children would turn gay if they were told about gay people in school. Or that it is religious discrimination for schools to have zero tolerance policies about gay bashing. Or that it infringes on a parents rights to have to acknowledge to their children that there are people that they disagree with in the world. But Proposition 8 didn't address any of these so called problems anyway. With the passing of Prop 8, there were still gay individuals in California, still gay couples, still gay parents, still gay teens in the schools. They do not suddenly disappear because you take away their rights.
Proponents tried to argue that Prop 8 was not about homophobia, that it was about defending traditional marriage. That is a lie of course, allowing someone else to marry can never impede your own right to marry. Proposition 8 was really about the notion that homosexuals are inferior. Go onto YouTube and listen to their commercials. These people consider it to be an infringement on their rights when they have to acknowledge the existence of gays and lesbians. Proponents of Prop 8 feel it does them harm to treat homosexuals as equals in public life. That's it.
As far as the wild accusations that Judge Walker should have decided to recuse himself, I have two quick points to make:
- It is not a "well known fact" that Judge Walker is openly gay. He has never publicly stated his sexual orientation. And don't you think if this were true the Religious Right would have been shouting from the rooftops from the moment he was selected from the case? No, the accusation came out the day that he ruled Prop 8 unconstitutional.
- It shouldn't matter what his sexual orientation is. To paraphrase another commentator of the decision, to say that a gay judge is unqualified to rule on a case concerning gay rights is like saying a black judge is unqualified to rule on a case concerning civil rights, or a female judge is unqualified to rule on a case concerning women's issues. To say that only someone from the majority is impartial enough to rule on a discrimination case against a minority group is ridiculous.
Fighting for equality,